Oil seeds, the premier source of fat in the Indian diet, are derived from a number of crops like groundnut, rape-seed and mustard, sesamum, linseed, soya bean, sun-flower, castor seed, cotton seed and niger seed etc.
These provide oil and oil c which are utilised in making lubricants, varn medicine, perfumes, candles, soaps, manure cattle feed. Oil seeds belong to edible and non-edi categories. While the former provides fat conten the Indian diet the latter meets the demand industrial oil.
India is a leading producer of oil seeds in world. Nine main oil seeds (groundnut, rape- and mustard, sesamum, linseed safflower, sun flo soya bean, niger seed and castor seed) toge occupy 20.97 per cent of the food grains area, percent of the nets own area and l3.94percento gross cropped area and contribute I 1.44 percent the total production of food grains in the count (1997-98).
While the area under oil seeds has re tered a moderate increase of 3.03 per cent ann between 1950-51 (107.27 lakh ha) and 199 (260.13 lakh ha) their production has witness phenomenal growth of 6.95 per cent during thes period (from 51.58 lakh tonnes to 220.15 lakh ton Madhya Pradesh is the leading producer of oils (area 22.65%, production 19.90% of India) in country followed by Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Gu’ and Andhra Pradesh.
These five states together tribute two-third of the area and the production seeds in the country. Among the seeds groundnut occupies 28 per cent of total and 29 percent of total production of oil seedsi country followed by rapeseed and mustard (211 26%), soyabean (28% and 29%) and sunflower and 4%). Soyabean and sunflower have been recently introduced and are gaining wide amongst the farmers.
Most of the oil seeds are as mixed crop in dry farming regions of the India is not self sufficient in respect seeds. In 1960-61 the total import of edible c 31.1 thousand tones valued at Rs. 4 crores rose to 5290 thousand tones and Rs. 11683 respectively during 2003-04. Due to growi mands of oil seeds and stagnation in the prod the import of edible oils is increasing in recent.